Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker Podcast Review

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Christmas Specials aren’t the only annual Reel World tradition; we also cover Star Wars movies, and boy howdy do we have one to discuss here…

We re-litigate The Last Jedi, discuss where we were at after The Force Awakens, speculate on the future of the franchise and weigh in on some things that we actually liked about this movie we mostly hated. Enjoy! Continue reading Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker Podcast Review

These Are the Only 4 Good Things About The [extremely bad] Rise of Skywalker

There have been a lot of posts and articles out there about the film that represents the end of the Skywalker Saga. And here’s the thing: they are all true! And then some!!

It is such a fucking shitty movie. You will laugh a lot at how shitty it is though, and laughter is good. Civilization will end in the next 50-60 years due to climate devastation. We need to be able to laugh! And this film will make you laugh.

So, you should assume that whenever this movie is playing, something bad is happening. That being said, there are a handful of moments in it that are in fact Actually Good. I will eventually splice them together and call it “The Actually Good Cut.” It will be about two minutes long.

SPOILERS ARE AHEAD BUT REALLY WHO CARES IT IS THAT BAD Continue reading These Are the Only 4 Good Things About The [extremely bad] Rise of Skywalker

5 Questions After Watching Solo: A Star Wars Story

WARNING: Here be spoilers. Your first and only warning.

Once The Last Jedi came and went, audiences officially began the journey from the “comfort” of the Skywalker Saga to the great unknown with the future of Star Wars. There is only one more film to go in the (foolishly presumed) final Skywalker trilogy, and soon enough there will be more Star Wars films that cover every little corner of the galaxy that is far, far away. As such, Solo provides some additional insight into the thought process guiding this venture. But also, it leaves many unanswered questions which I, an expert – obviously, will attempt to answer.

1. What were they thinking? Continue reading 5 Questions After Watching Solo: A Star Wars Story

11 issues with The Last Jedi after two viewings

 

When I left the theater for The Force Awakens two years ago, I could not help but feel conflicted. I enjoyed a lot of what happened in the film, but it was disheartening to see *just* how much the filmed leaned on nostalgia and referencing the original films.

Cut to a week ago and me departing the theater after seeing The Last Jedi. On one hand, I was comforted to see how the film purposefully tried to distance itself from nostalgia. That was not my primary reaction though.

Instead, I was just in a daze about the actual execution of the film. There was such a lack of quality control in regards to the script and plotting. It really soured my experience of the film and took me completely out of it by the end. I kind of never wanted to watch the film again and lost all of my enthusiasm for the future of the Skywalker saga.

Having previously purchased tickets for a second viewing already, I went in determined to understand the source of my frustration. While I did enjoy the film more the second time around (being prepared for the problems this time), there are still fundamental issues with the film’s execution that undermine much of what the film attempted to do.

Continue reading 11 issues with The Last Jedi after two viewings

How Rian Johnson Finally Moved Star Wars into the 21st Century

 

Early in The Last Jedi, General Hux gives the kind of speech we’ve become used to in the Star Wars universe. It’s theatrical bordering on cartoonish with threats being made as the First Order is on the verge of battling the Resistance.

A real new order is established though when Poe Dameron snarkily pretends not to hear Hux and provides a distraction for the rest of his mates to escape the planet they were trapped on.

A few minutes later, we see the ending of The Force Awakens repeated. JJ Abrams showed reverence as Ray handed Luke Skywalker his lightsaber back. The music swells, and we are positioned for a historic moment. In The Last Jedi, Luke does indeed take that lightsaber…and throw it over his shoulder like it’s nothing.

These two moments will quickly establish whether you are in or out on this particular film. Continue reading How Rian Johnson Finally Moved Star Wars into the 21st Century

Ranking the Lightsaber Duels in the Star Wars Films

Welcome to the third edition of “Enter the Reel World.” I am your host, Michael Thomas. Read more of my thoughts on film/television here. (I recently ranked the first ten films of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and had Seven Questions After Watching Season 1 of Daredevil. I also watched The Punisher and was completely baffled by its awfulness.) You can send me feedback on things that I write here.

 

Much like last week, this article should be fairly simple to understand. I take a brief look at every lightsaber duel in the first six Star Wars films and discuss what I like and/or dislike about each one. After looking at each duel, I rank them all. Please share your rankings in the comments if you so desire. Continue reading Ranking the Lightsaber Duels in the Star Wars Films